By Chris Goldberg
Phillylacrosse.com, Posted 3/2/11
An American Red Cross Blood Drive for blood, platelet and bone marrow donors is being held on Friday, April 22 in honor of Chestnut Hill College freshman lacrosse player Shane Franzone, who has been fighting a rare blood disorder that has kept him off the field and out of the classroom.
Franzone, a Norristown High alum, was diagnosed with Aplastic anemia, a condition where bone marrow fails to produce sufficient blood cells (red and white cells as well as platelets).
The blood drive is being held from 11 a.m.-5 p.m. at the Norristown PAL Center at 340 Harding Blvd.
Appointments for blood donors are being taken every 15 minutes. All types are accepted and donations are used to replenish the overall blood supply. To sign up, click here, or contact Susan Castor (610,631,4152).
For donor eligibility guidelines, click here or call 1 800 RED CROSS.
Franzone has spent much of the past four months at Children’s Hospital of Pennsylvania since being diagnosed shortly after competing with Chestnut Hill College in the annual Nick Colleluori Classic in early October. He has been receiving two blood transfusions weekly (for red blood cells and platelets) and he said in an interview that doctors have determined he will probably undergo a bone marrow transplant.
Despite having his life turned upside down, Franzone has continued to stay involved in lacrosse. He has been serving as a volunteer coach at Norristown High and attends as many functions as possible with his Chestnut Hill College teammates.
“I am staying involved with Chestnut Hill and and Norristown and that keeps me in it (lacrosse),” said Franzone. “I am going to try to go to all the home games. They gave me my equipment – my shirts and cleats.
“I think that staying involved keeps me feeling better. I also have been hanging out with my friends as much as I can.”
Franzone’s mother, Denice, said he has maintained a positive attitude in the face of a monumental life challenge.
“I think he is stronger than he will ever know for getting this far,” she said. “He really needs to get focused for the next leg of this. Sometimes it just seems so unfair and I just keep the faith that he will once again be able to do what he loves and has such a passion for…playing lacrosse.”
To learn more about Shane Franzone’s recovery, log onto caringbridge.org and use “sfranzone” to complete the website.